Here’s Why Oakland Parents Are Suing California

It might be the holidays, but we’re not slowing down our fight with our children’s futures at stake. 

That’s why the week after Thanksgiving, The Oakland REACH joined with other families and the Community Coalition of Los Angeles to file a lawsuit in Superior Court against the State of California. Our powerful parents are now fighting for the lives of Black and brown families—not just in Oakland, but across California. 

That’s right, I told you this one was big!

We joined this lawsuit because we know what works—just look at our track record of policy wins and system shifts through grassroots parent organizing. When COVID-19 hit, we listened to what families needed and we built a solution: The City-Wide Virtual Hub. And it’s working! Students from the most underserved neighborhoods have made real academic gains in literacy through the Hub’s virtual learning model.

With this lawsuit, we are demanding that empowered parents and students be at the center of the plan to address education inequities across the state. We’re not just banging at their door demanding they “do something”—we’re telling them, “DO THIS”, and scale our Hub. 

And we’re getting the opportunity to spread the word nationally—from the LA Times, USA Today, New York Times and SF Chronicle. This is the power families like ours have always lacked and long-deserved.

What You Need to Know About Our Lawsuit

Who are the Plaintiffs?

  • The Oakland REACH, the Community Coalition of Los Angeles and parents (including members of The REACH).

Who are the Defendants? 

  • The State of CA, State Board of Education and State Superintendent Tony Thurmond.

What are we asking for?

  • We’re fighting for the Constitutional right to quality education for our kids. Specifically, we are demanding that the State include parents at the table where plans are being made AND to scale parent-centered solutions like our Citywide Virtual Hub. 

What are we NOT asking for? 

  • This is important: This lawsuit is not about remote learning versus in-person learning—we’re not demanding the State simply reopen schools. Just one out of five parents surveyed would definitely send their children back to school if it reopened tomorrow. 
  • We’re also not saying remote learning cannot work. Our kids have made literacy gains in our Hub! Instead, we are demanding the system do right by our kids—that they give us something worthwhile, whether that learning is in person or remote. 

 Where can I learn more? 

And there’s much more to read, watch, and listen to in the news—our lawsuit has been featured everywhere from the LA Times, SF Chronicle, KQED and Education Post— to CNN, the New York Times, and POLITICO!

We’ll continue to update coverage on our site.

By: Lakisha Young
Title: Here’s Why Oakland Parents Are Suing California
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Published Date: Wed, 16 Dec 2020 23:02:10 +0000